For discussion about setting up your studio and advice on the gear and equipment within it.
By martel80 Sat Mar 10, 2018 10:37 am
So I have a mpc 2000XL as my sequencer and a s3000 in the midi out 1.

I'd like to add a last sampler to my rig.

Something under 500$ USD if possible.

I found a ASR 10 rackmount for 450$ USD at TheSoniq but it seems like the guy wont answer my mail and when I called him twice he made it almost clear that I was disturbing/bugging him and last time I called him he told me the sampler was missing a rackmount ear so he had to look for it in the back of his store and didnt have time for that ( you see what I mean....a serious men ( Sorry, whoever you are, I was really going to buy your machine )

Anyways, rant over and long story short, I want to get a 3rd sampler for midi out 2 on my mpc 2000xl.

I'm not into the grain of the s950/mpc60.

I'd like something ''cleaner''.

I love the snap of my 2000xl.

I also love the ''thump'' of my s3000.

I'd like to add something to compliment.

Something as clean as my s3000 at least......nothing grainy.

I dont run my inputs hot, I personally dont like the result.

I do transfer my sound through analog inputs because I love the sound it gives compared to the digital transfer.

Is there something at E-MU or Ensoniq ( or another akai if there's something not too sterile or too grainy )that is sub 500$ USD that would give me a warm clean sound with at least the same amount of ''grain'' as my 2kxl or less ?

Thanks for the advice.

EDIT: Just want to make something clear. I dont need a lot of sampling time or editing features other then chopping and maybe basic filtering ( a la 2KXL HPF, nothing more). So in fact I guess I'm asking, is the old EPS is a clean device ...or any other hardware that you could think of in fact.
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By tapedeck Sat Mar 10, 2018 12:40 pm
the old eps is dirty. the eps 16 maybe cleaner - a precursor to the asr. incredible machines.

you can get an old emu - almost any model for cheap as well and they have a very distinctive sound that i personally love. they work a lot differently than akais, but you sound like yer ok with that.
By martel80 Sat Mar 10, 2018 1:23 pm
tapedeck wrote:the old eps is dirty. the eps 16 maybe cleaner - a precursor to the asr. incredible machines.

you can get an old emu - almost any model for cheap as well and they have a very distinctive sound that i personally love. they work a lot differently than akais, but you sound like yer ok with that.


Thanks tapedeck,

Yes, I dont care about the workflow. I just want something warm but not 12bit ish like the s950 or sp-1200 .

I want the grain but not the grit....if that makes any sense.

This will be purely for hosting 3-4 sample at a time maximum.

I'm a bit confused tho', the guy at The Day Dream Sound on Youtube seem to rate the eps classic as less grit then the EPS 16.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0YkEBX8ZYo0[/youtube]

He reviewed it as a ''Murky'' sampler..... ( which seems to fall exactly on what I'm into. )

By the way, its for instruments sample, not drums. So I wonder if I'd get enough sample time with an eps

What are your thought on that ?
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By tapedeck Sun Mar 11, 2018 11:42 pm
martel80 wrote:I'm a bit confused tho', the guy at The Day Dream Sound on Youtube seem to rate the eps classic as less grit then the EPS 16.

He reviewed it as a ''Murky'' sampler..... ( which seems to fall exactly on what I'm into. )

By the way, its for instruments sample, not drums. So I wonder if I'd get enough sample time with an eps

What are your thought on that ?

i dont have an eps16 to compare it to, i just figure its newer and higher bit depth (classic is 13bit) so it should be cleaner. everybody is welcome to their opinion and i dont believe everything i hear on the internet.

for instrument samples many old samplers would do - the older ones were geared a lot more for instruments like that so they have a lot of cool editing options. an emax like homedude said sounds good too.

if you get good at looping and programming, you dont need a lot of ram. some of those eps disks fit 8 good sounding instruments at a time into that 400k.
By martel80 Mon Mar 12, 2018 4:47 pm
Thanks guys.

The Emax seems a bit out of my financial capacity for the moment.

And I agree with you Tapedeck, I dont need a lot of sampling capacity nor editing,

To be honest with you, the way I work with my gear is almost like filtering or coloration box where I would cut and edit my samples before sending it to the mPC and s3000.

It seems like the glue those machine offer is just making everything so much better then ITB plus it gives a very nice polished color and even some little extra.

I do believe that the little extra i'm looking to get for my last one would be something more warm then my 2kxl....the s3000 gives something pretty cool but I could deal with something maybe a bit more heavy warmth then the s3000....definitely more warm then my 2kxl.
By martel80 Tue Mar 13, 2018 11:21 am
Lampdog wrote:ASR10 is plenty warm imo.


I agree with you, the issue is, the one I found at thesoniq is 450$ USD ( which fit my financial capacity ) but the guy is as serious as a drug dealer waiting for his next batch.

Me calling him:
His answer:
''Yeah, yeah ill email you back,... I just need to find the ear for the asr10 rackmount , its in the back and I dont have time to look for it''.... ''If youre in such a hurry, you can buy one on ebay''

cmon man....are you serious now...

That sounds like someone that doesnt have an asr10 and that is trying to cover his BS.

The other option I have is to make a 9hr road trip to toronto and get the keyboard version but Ive heard so many bad stories about the asr KB version over heating that I'm just scared of buying a machine that is waiting to die on me.
By richie Tue Mar 13, 2018 4:26 pm
Just a thought -- You may want to consider if adding an extra sampler to your workflow will have any added benefits to the creative process.

The more gear I have, the more inconvenienced I find myself getting. Having to navigate through several pieces of gear to achieve a particular sound that is not discernible to virtually anyone else does not seem worth it. If I were you, I would invest into building a nice DAW or upgrading your soundcard/interface as you will eventually be dumping into the DAW anyway right.
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By tapedeck Tue Mar 13, 2018 4:56 pm
i have to agree with richie to an extent here.

yea old samplers 'sound cool', but as we've said before, a lot of the mojo is also due to use. if yer thinking of an old sampler just for effecting sounds you've already made via computer, i have personally found it gets old quick...maintaining different media formats, maintaining the gear itself, buying more cables / patchbays / mixers, diving through outdated and convoluted menus, making two incompatible pieces play nice together, having to load up all the separate but related **** in different ways on different machines.

if its a 'sound' yer after, it could be worth considering something like a nice preamp or another piece of outboard to just run things through and use to add character to individual tracks or to the mix. if you really love the workflow of a particular machine, it can be very inspiring. but if its just going to be an overly complicated fx device, it seems a little wasted.

but again - do what you want...i have personally found that the tiny bit of extra sound i get is not always worth the hassle. you sound committed to the process, which i respect, so this is just offering another idea on how to achieve a similar goal.
By martel80 Tue Mar 13, 2018 5:04 pm
richie wrote:Just a thought -- You may want to consider if adding an extra sampler to your workflow will have any added benefits to the creative process.

The more gear I have, the more inconvenienced I find myself getting. Having to navigate through several pieces of gear to achieve a particular sound that is not discernible to virtually anyone else does not seem worth it. If I were you, I would invest into building a nice DAW or upgrading your soundcard/interface as you will eventually be dumping into the DAW anyway right.


Good point richie,

I already run through and from an Audient ID22 with a Digi 002R for extra in and out.

I'm about to start building a DIY summing mixer to get extra glue between all my gear and bouncing in stereo.

I love my workflow so far, like I said, I dont chop in the samplers. all the ideas are created ITB and bounced to different samplers depending on what I want to achieve.

I want a last one because even tho I love my 2kxl for that snap sound, my s3000 for the thump/little warmth, I still want something less defined and more fat...warm, maybe less spiky then my s3000...less defined in a certain way but not grainy. I mean, I love the horrible definition of sound 36 chambers and I believe It could serve me best for what I want.

To be fully transparent, I'm all good ITB but what I want is for me to get those textures covered and IMHO, thers no way to do it like in the hardware....even if itsjust for that glue it gives.
By martel80 Tue Mar 13, 2018 5:30 pm
tapedeck wrote:i have to agree with richie to an extent here.

yea old samplers 'sound cool', but as we've said before, a lot of the mojo is also due to use. if yer thinking of an old sampler just for effecting sounds you've already made via computer, i have personally found it gets old quick...maintaining different media formats, maintaining the gear itself, buying more cables / patchbays / mixers, diving through outdated and convoluted menus, making two incompatible pieces play nice together, having to load up all the separate but related **** in different ways on different machines.

if its a 'sound' yer after, it could be worth considering something like a nice preamp or another piece of outboard to just run things through and use to add character to individual tracks or to the mix. if you really love the workflow of a particular machine, it can be very inspiring. but if its just going to be an overly complicated fx device, it seems a little wasted.

but again - do what you want...i have personally found that the tiny bit of extra sound i get is not always worth the hassle. you sound committed to the process, which i respect, so this is just offering another idea on how to achieve a similar goal.


And I totally agree with you both.

The thing is that I'm not doing this to get a career, contracts, dreaming of beatmaking for a '' insert name drop here''. I do this for me, as a perpetual hobby / finally releasing what I want as finished product.

Right now, without going into too much personal info, this whole beatmaking thing is letting me disconnect from my reality. I love my ITB process and Imaster it as much as I need to. This is really for personal project which is not linked to my professional audio engineering life.

This is for my living room setup that I just enjoy playing with whenever I can/feel.

My home setup is pretty basic, like I said before, I got my gear for in and out plus comp and soon summing box ( might even go with coloration after depending on my ( not to go into details ) personal life happening).

The point is just to bring that last color to my palette.

Like NO I.D. said recently, there's people making stop signs but i prefer to do picasso's.

My taste are a bit expensive but I can afford what I can afford.

I dont like the workflow of chopping in a hardware sampler but I love the sequencing and non linearity of my mpc sequencer, it really give a groove I love. The only issue is that certain sound doesnt feel right on my 2kxl...same thing with my s3000. To me, they are not interchangeable ( to my picasso taste ) and thats the only reason I'm looking into a last machine ( to fill that warmth/undefined gap ).

I'm not into mpc60 grith nor the s900. I never tried a sp-1200 but i believe I would get maybe even worst bit definition or grit and I'm not running after bad bit sound.

When I listen to Mobb deep The infamous or wu tang 36 chamber, I dont hear the bad bit sound I hear on early premier and pete rock tracks. I hear warmth and hollowness which seems to fit my needs but i'm not sure if theres any other samplers that can do that. So thats why I asked.

But yeah, you guys are right about underlining the workflow and necessity....
The thing is that i'm almost 40 now and I'm not doing this to reach a career goal but to achieve an artistic goal.
By richie Tue Mar 13, 2018 5:42 pm
It's good that you have a decent interface. I have the RME Multiface II with the HDSPE PCIE card so thankfully I can keep moving to higher end system as I please.

So if I'm understanding you correct -- You're essentially using the samplers for coloration and then dump back into the DAW for your editing and sequencing?

If you're looking for a wider sound then yeah the ASR-10 can do that provided you drive the input on it. Alternatively, since you mentioned summing - I've fiddled around driving the gain on one of the Mackie 1402 VLZ series (I have 2 of them) after seeing some videos on YouTube of (from what I recall) were driving the output back into the return where it creates a distortion that almost sounds compressed. I agree with tapedeck too, that pedals are useful for added effect as well but admittedly I do not have much experience with pedals to share any input on that.

I can understand why you'd drive to Toronto, with the USD being as strong as it is you won't be finding comparable deals dealing with the scalpers on eBay at this point. What I do know is, if your intent is to use the sampler for color and not chopping, then it is pointless to get the ASR-10 keyboard version. They do heat up a lot. I believe there are revisions or some sort of modifications you can do to cool down the fan but with the rack version you don't deal with that sh*t at all. Plus I believe the rack comes with SCSI standard (someone correct me if I'm wrong here?) as well as OS 3.53 (so no need to buy boot disks or eprom upgrades).
By martel80 Tue Mar 13, 2018 5:48 pm
richie wrote:It's good that you have a decent interface. I have the RME Multiface II with the HDSPE PCIE card so thankfully I can keep moving to higher end system as I please.

So if I'm understanding you correct -- You're essentially using the samplers for coloration and then dump back into the DAW for your editing and sequencing?

If you're looking for a wider sound then yeah the ASR-10 can do that provided you drive the input on it. Alternatively, since you mentioned summing - I've fiddled around driving the gain on one of the Mackie 1402 VLZ series (I have 2 of them) after seeing some videos on YouTube of (from what I recall) were driving the output back into the return where it creates a distortion that almost sounds compressed. I agree with tapedeck too, that pedals are useful for added effect as well but admittedly I do not have much experience with pedals to share any input on that.

I can understand why you'd drive to Toronto, with the USD being as strong as it is you won't be finding comparable deals dealing with the scalpers on eBay at this point. What I do know is, if your intent is to use the sampler for color and not chopping, then it is pointless to get the ASR-10 keyboard version. They do heat up a lot. I believe there are revisions or some sort of modifications you can do to cool down the fan but with the rack version you don't deal with that sh*t at all. Plus I believe the rack comes with SCSI standard (someone correct me if I'm wrong here?) as well as OS 3.53 (so no need to buy boot disks or eprom upgrades).


I do use my Mpc to sequence, I only rechop the blank part from the begining and end of my samples in the hardware samplers.

So I use this setup for the swing and the color.

I just want to use that extra midi out B to connect to that last rack sampler. ( or KB if its going to be the EPS classic )

( hoping theres no problem to make my mpc talk to the EPS )


EDIT: By the way, I never overdrive my inputs...thats not the sound I'm after....and I still need a different color . I know , I'm fussy :/
Last edited by martel80 on Tue Mar 13, 2018 5:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.
By richie Tue Mar 13, 2018 5:51 pm
martel80 wrote:I'm not into mpc60 grith nor the s900. I never tried a sp-1200 but i believe I would get maybe even worst bit definition or grit and I'm not running after bad bit sound.

When I listen to Mobb deep The infamous or wu tang 36 chamber, I dont hear the bad bit sound I hear on early premier and pete rock tracks. I hear warmth and hollowness which seems to fit my needs but i'm not sure if theres any other samplers that can do that. So thats why I asked.


To me the MPC 60's strength is in the sequencer and midi timing. The accuracy of of it is what I believe gave it that feeling. To the SP12/SP1200's credit what I think is dope about it is that you still keep the bottom end of whatever you sample in, even when transposing significantly lower from the original sample (maybe it's just me but on the Akai gear, it's as if everything pre 50hz is totally lost). The drums knock on it in a way that I prefer over what Akai has to offer and based on my mixing skillset, which I find a lot of people don't want to take into consideration online -- They figure, they'll buy the same gear as those they look up to and expect to have that same creative output quality. Yes this is partially achievable if your goal is to trace what others made but it isn't as if the bedroom producer will have access to the same analog consoles and engineers the pioneers did.

From what I recall in several instances, the early Mobb Deep stuff was on the EPS 16+ and the MPC 3000. When RZA was doing 36 Chambers, the studio footage online shows that he was on the ASR-10, which lends credence to your preferences over the punchy and ring modulated sound that Premier and Pete Rock often had.